Company "B" of the 11th Pennsylvania Regiment, under the command of Captain John Coates, was officially authorized on October 25, 1776. Some elements of the 11th Pennsylvania saw action in the Battle of Princeton, January 3, 1777. Later, some of the 11th Pennsylvania took part in the patrol actions in New Jersey, which marked the spring and summer of 1777. During the summer, the 11th Pennsylvania was assigned to the 2d Brigade of Anthony Wayne`s division. Some of its troops were detached to serve with the special task force (the "light infantry corps") under Brig. Gen. William Maxwell, which was formed for the fall campaign opposing the British approach toward Philadelphia from the south. It was Maxwell`s command which fought the delaying action at Iron Hill on September 3, 1777, when Lt. Col. Francis Gurney was wounded.

     The regiment as a whole seems to have seen its first major action at the Battle of Brandywine, on September 11, 1777, and saw especially hard fighting, taking heavy casualties. The regiment was in combat again on September 20 when, with the rest of Wayne`s division, it was surprised at Paoli. Due to bad tactics, the unit took the heaviest losses in the engagement. The 11th Pennsylvania fought again at Germantown on October 4, 1777. The 11th Pennsylvania's total losses during the whole campaign were substantial, for by November 1, 1777, it had present for duty only eight officers and eighty enlisted men. Another sixty-six enlisted men were sick, and thirty-one were on detached service.

     After spending the winter of 1777-1778 at Valley Forge with the other regiments of the Pennsylvania Line, the 11th Pennsylvania took part in the campaign across New Jersey which followed. At the Battle of Monmouth, on June 28, 1778, it was one of the three Pennsylvania regiments in the force which Aaron Burr led in a late-afternoon assault on the flank of a British counterattacking column. Less than a week later, on July 1, the unit was dissolved, and merged with elements of the 10th Pennsylvania.

To the present - preserving the past : Today's 11th Pennsylvania Regiment is a member of the Continental Line, and a varied mix of men, women and children, representing a cross section of Americana, culture and background. While some states only allow reenactors over the age of 16 to participate in battlefield engagements, kids of all ages still enjoy camp life and other aspects of reenacting. We are an equal opportunity unit, open to all who wish to join. Annual membership dues vary by year. Check with a board member to see what the current rate is (covers insurance requirements at various events). E-Mail us through the connection on the home page, or write our unit Secretary directly by clicking on the lizard below. We will be glad to answer any questions you have and send you a courtesy copy of our newsletter, the Coates Chronicles.


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